Our Hurt for Humboldt…
We’ve taken a while to soak in and reflect on the horrific tragedy that occurred on April 6 and forever altered the lives of a beautiful community in Saskatchewan. Our families send our most heartfelt condolences to each and every person affected. We are holding space for you in our hearts….
It was one of those mornings. I know you’ve all had one.
My smoothie exploded when I turned on the blender on as the cup wasn’t on properly.
My daughter was protesting breakfast and dumped her plate on the floor.
I got my period.
Nothing appeared to be going right.
After many minor mishaps, I finally got Reese loaded in the car and I came around the corner to hit the frozen driveway. I slipped and fell, spilling my coffee all over my coat. “Shake it off,” I kept repeating to myself.
Moments before pulling out of the driveway, I realized it was garbage day and ran back into the garage to quickly grab the bin ….as the bin and I proceeded down the walk, we began to slide. I was wearing heels…there was nothing to stop me. So there we went, down the icy driveway to end up on the ground, the bin on the bottom of the pile and me on top. Garbage. Literally. Everywhere.
Side note: IT’S APRIL 12TH, MOTHER NATURE. DID YOU MISS THE MEMO ON SPRING??
We hit the road and finally arrived at daycare. For the fourth day in a row Reese melts down when I drop her off. The screaming, “No, mama, no!” is more than I can handle. It was reminiscent of my first week of work post mat leave when I swore I would never work again because of my broken heart.
When I finally got back in the car I tried to compose myself and turned on the Super Soul podcast that had just downloaded the evening prior. Thank goodness.
I was able to re-group, breathe and re-frame. I walked confidently into the building downtown to see almost every single person wearing a jersey. In the midst of my own minor morning of chaos, I had completely forgotten about the significance of April 12th.
Then – it came – the uncontrollable tears and ugly cry in a downtown walkway.
So many people had chosen to wear jerseys to stand in solidarity with the Humboldt community and to show support from across this great nation. The tragedy feels HEAVY on everyone’s hearts, as we are all somehow connected to the game of hockey, not to mention the fact that many of us have spent countless hours on the bus with team mates travelling to away games. It seems that many people feel as though they have narrowly escaped the same fate, or contemplate what they would be feeling in that same situation
But, for me, the thing I can’t quite ever shake after days of reflection – I am a mom. Each of those people lost in that tragedy has a mom. It was every mom’s worst nightmare realized and how you ever really recover from that is beyond me.
So as I was freaking out about spilled garbage and a cranky toddler, what I had really lost was my perspective. I had forgotten that I have crying baby to pick up from daycare today and a giant smoothie mess and Reese’s breakfast remnants all over the kitchen floor that I will see as I arrive home today. And you know what – it will be the most beautiful mess I have ever seen. Thank you to those jersey-clad strangers today for reminding me that it is those everyday messy moments that make up the fabric of our life.
When tragedies happen, it can be difficult to talk about with children – but their expression of love and compassion is often so beautiful.
‘Mommy, why there all those hockey sticks on that building?’ asked my little, ever so curious Jack. I explained to him that there was a bad car accident with a bus and semi truck. That there was a hockey team on the bus and that some of the players got hurt really, really badly.
‘Did they get a bandaid on their owie, Mama?’
‘Well, they didn’t get a bandaid i answered, ‘cause the owie was too big, instead they went up to heaven together.’
‘Oh, with Grandpa Paul?’
‘Yes, with Grandpa Paul. The hockey sticks are there because a lot of people are really sad about the accident and they want to show the boys and their families that they are thinking of them and sending them all their love.’
‘Oh that’s good, Mommy. I like hockey and buses and semis and hockey sticks.’
And so, that is how we shared the tragic story of the Humboldt Broncos with our almost three year old little man. As I shared the story with him I pictured him, grown up with his hockey bag slung over his shoulder and his stick in his hand walking towards the bus. Heading off to another game, and my heart ached so, so much for all the mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers and friends of the Humboldt boys. I can’t even begin to imagine their pain or what life will now look like for them. All I can do is think of them often, share their story and put a stick out to remind others.